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Polamalu 'Tweaks' Ankle During Practice (AP)
Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu is worked on by Steelers head trainer John Norwig before football practice Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006 at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Mich..  The Steelers face the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl LX on Sunday, Feb. 5, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)AP - Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu said he "tweaked" an ankle during practice Thursday and was added to the team's Super Bowl injury report as probable.


Spurs Defeat Warriors 89-86 (AP)
San Antonio Spurs' Tony Parker (9) goes up for a shot over Golden State Warriors' Baron Davis in the first half of their NBA basketball game Thursday,  Feb. 2, 2006, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)AP - Tony Parker scored 23 points and Tim Duncan shook off a terrible game to score the San Antonio Spurs' final five points in their sixth straight victory, 89-86 over the slumping Golden State Warriors on Thursday night.


Heat Hold Cavs to 9 4th Quarter Points (AP)
Miami Heat's Dwyane Wade drives to the basket against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the second quarter of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006, in Miami. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)AP - The trio of newly picked All-Star starters each played as though they deserved the honor. Fortunately for the Miami Heat, two of those players were on their side.


Yao Edges Kobe As Top All-Star Votegetter (AP)
Houston Rockets' Yao Ming (11), of China, holds up the ball high after catching an inbound pass over Milwaukee Bucks' Jiri Welsch, of the Czech Republic, during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2006, in Houston. The Rockets won 86-84. (AP Photo/Tim Johnson)AP - Yao Ming edged Kobe Bryant as the top votegetter in fan balloting for the 55th NBA All-Star game Thursday, and Shaquille O'Neal became the fifth player in league history to earn 13 consecutive selections for the midseason showcase.


Steelers' Porter Continues War of Words (AP)
Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Joey Porter attends a media availability at the Steelers' Pontiac, Mich. hotel Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006.  (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)AP - Pittsburgh linebacker Joey Porter isn't scheduled to talk publicly again before the Super Bowl. There's some question about which team is happier: his Steelers or the Seattle Seahawks.


Correction: FBN-McNabb-Owens-Feud Story (AP)
AP - In a Feb. 1 story about Philadelphia Eagles teammates, The Associated Press erroneously reported that Terrell Owens criticized Donovan McNabb during an interview with Michael Irvin on ESPN. Owens' remarks came last November during an an ESPN interview with Dan Patrick, not Irvin.

Heat smothers Cavaliers, Spurs spike Warriors (Reuters)
San Antonio Spurs Manu Ginobili (R) drives around Golden State Warriors Mickael Pietrus in the first half of an NBA game in Oakland, California, February 2, 2006. (Kimberly White/Reuters)Reuters - The Miami Heat notched their fourth straight win on Thursday, crushing the Cleveland Cavaliers 101-73.


Rizzuto Selling Much of His Memorabilia (AP)
Cleveland Indian's catcher Jim Hegan, second from right, with his mask off and starting toward team dugout, watches as New York Yankees' Joe DiMaggio (5) nears plate to score the winning run on perfect squeeze bunt by shortstop Phil Rizzuto, running toward first base at left, in 9th inning clincher game at Yankee Stadium, Sept. 17, 1951.  Home plate umpire at right is Cal Hubbard.  Dancing behind home plate is Yankees outfielder Mickey Mantle. In New York, Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006, where he announced that he has consigned a collection of personal baseball memorabilia for auction, Rizzuto recounted this game-winning bunt that scored DiMaggio and moved the Yankees into first place.  (AP Photo/file)AP - Holy Cow! Phil Rizzuto is selling much of his memorabilia. Hey, you huckleberries, the Scooter even brought some of the stuff along to a Thursday news conference to announce the auction, which will take place this summer. Among the items are several World Series rings, a Christmas card from Mickey Mantle and a 56-year-old Yankees cap that is worn, dusty and has a piece of gum still stuck to the top.


Tommy Haas Beats Andrei Pavel at Delray (AP)
Tommy Haas, from Germany, waits for the judge to rule on a shot during his match against Andrel Pavel, from Romania, Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006, in Delray Beach, Fla., at the International Tennis Championship. (AP Photo/J. Pat Carter)AP - Fourth-seeded Tommy Haas of Germany beat Romania's Andrei Pavel 6-7 (1-7), 6-1, 7-5 on Thursday to move into the quarterfinals of the International Tennis Championships.


Wild Defeat Sharks 3-2 in Shootout (AP)
Members of the Minnesota Wild, including goalie Manny Fernandez (35), celebrate after a 3-2 win in a shootout over the San Jose Sharks during an NHL hockey game in San Jose, Calif., on Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)AP - Brian Rolston was more impressed by his goalie than with his game-winning goal. Manny Fernandez was perfect in the shootout and Rolston scored the only goal to lift the Minnesota Wild to a 3-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night.


Beyond his years
DETROIT – Seattle's Pro Bowl middle linebacker Lofa Tatupu is a rookie in name only.

Porter: We'll try to 'tap out' Seahawks (AP)
Pittsburgh linebacker Joey Porter isn't scheduled to talk publicly again before the Super Bowl. There's some question about which team is happier: his Steelers or the Seattle Seahawks. Porter kept up his verbal barrage on Thursday, saying the Steelers will be so physical in the Super Bowl they will try to make Seattle quit playing.

Bettis' final fling a rare thing (AP)
Jerome Bettis returned for one more chance to make a run at a championship. Against long odds, he got it. Many stars in all sports go entire careers without playing for a ring. A few -- Bettis, Mark Grace, Oscar Robertson, Ray Bourque come to mind -- finally get a shot at one as they're heading for the exit.

Steelers S Polamalu 'tweaks' ankle (AP)
Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu said he "tweaked" an ankle during practice Thursday and was added to the team's Super Bowl injury report as probable. The cause of the injury wasn't immediately known. Only a pool reporter selected by the NFL is permitted to watch pre-Super Bowl practices, and Polamalu mentioned the injury to that reporter.

Martz turns down Lions job offer (AP)
Mike Martz backed out of the Detroit Lions' offensive coordinator position on Thursday, and the ex-St. Louis Rams coach appears content to sit out next season. "Obviously, I took the job," Martz said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "It just didn't work out with the money. "There's a bottom-line figure my agent has and I didn't want to have the details, so we just move on." Martz...

Four Vikes at boat party get trail dates (AP)
A judge set trial dates Thursday for the four Minnesota Vikings charged with misdemeanors in a boat party scandal. Quarterback Daunte Culpepper and running back Moe Williams agreed to be tried together starting April 18. Defensive back Fred Smoot is due to stand trial May 2, and offensive lineman Bryant McKinnie's date is May 22.

McNabb: T.O. rant a black-on-black crime (AP)
Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb injected a race element into his rift with Terrell Owens on Wednesday, saying the receiver's criticism amounted to "black-on-black crime." In an interview with ESPN, McNabb rehashed some of the low moments of his relationship with his teammate, making fun of Owens' driveway apology and bringing up the race angle.

Union preparing to take NFL to court (AP)
The NFL Players Association is preparing to take the league to court if there is no immediate progress on a new contract. NFLPA executive director Gene Upshaw set March 9 as the date he will begin consulting players on legal action if no deal has been reached to extend the collective bargaining agreement.

Locklear thankful for second chance (AP)
Seahawks right tackle Sean Locklear has put his legal troubles behind him -- for now -- to focus on winning his first Super Bowl. Locklear spent two days in jail the week before the NFC championship game on a domestic violence charge. He was taken into custody after a confrontation with his girlfriend outside a city nightspot.

Ten years ago, Seattle nearly went south (AP)
As a Californian, Ken Behring never felt welcomed in the Pacific Northwest. And that was even before he tried moving the Seattle Seahawks to Southern California. A decade after Behring announced his plans, the Seahawks are about to play in their first Super Bowl. "I don't believe my father ever felt embraced," David Behring, Ken's son and Seahawks team president from 1993-97, said in a phone...

A new balance of power
Because they can score <i>and</i> defend, Avery Johnson's Mavericks have risen to the top of the Western Conference.

Familiar faces among All-Star starters (AP)
Yao Ming edged Kobe Bryant as the top votegetter in fan balloting for the 55th NBA All-Star game Thursday, and Shaquille O'Neal became the fifth player in league history to earn 13 consecutive selections for the midseason showcase. Yao and Tracy McGrady give the host Houston Rockets two starters in the Feb.

All-Stars Wade, O'Neal lead Heat rout (AP)
The trio of newly picked All-Star starters each played as though they deserved the honor. Fortunately for the Miami Heat, two of those players were on their side. Dwyane Wade had 24 points and six assists, Shaquille O'Neal had 21 points and eight rebounds, and the Heat used a pair of big scoring bursts to defeat Cleveland 101-73 on Thursday night and snap the Cavaliers' seven-game winning streak.

Duncan clutch in Spurs win over Warriors (AP)
For most of the second half, Tim Duncan appeared to be shut down by Troy Murphy. As it turned out, Duncan simply was waiting until the last possible minute to put the San Antonio Spurs on his shoulders. Tony Parker scored 23 points and Duncan shook off a terrible game to score the Spurs' final five points in their sixth straight victory, 89-86 over the slumping Golden State Warriors on Thursday...

Knicks coach Brown fined $20,000 by NBA (AP)
Knicks coach Larry Brown was fined $20,000 Thursday by the NBA for failing to leave the court in a timely manner after he was ejected from New York's 130-97 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. Brown was thrown out for arguing with referee Steve Javie in the third quarter Tuesday night after New York was called for a flagrant foul and a technical within a 2-minute span.

Antonio Davis' wife faces battery charge (AP)
Kendra Davis, the wife of New York Knicks forward Antonio Davis, was charged with misdemeanor battery Thursday for allegedly throwing a cup of coffee at a woman during a traffic dispute last fall, police said. Last month, Kendra Davis had a verbal confrontation with a fan at a Knicks-Bulls game in Chicago, prompting her husband to climb into the stands to check on her.

Suns F Stoudamire to intensify rehab (AP)
Amare Stoudemire was cleared for increased activity, including jogging, after an MRI exam on Thursday showed no reason to slow his rehabilitation. However, the Suns, in a brief statement, set no timetable for his return to the team. The All-Star player has been sidelined all season following surgery on his left knee.

Stojakovic leads Pacers past Lakers (AP)
It took two games for Peja Stojakovic's new teammates to start comparing him to Reggie Miller. Stojakovic had 26 points and 13 rebounds in his home debut, and the Indiana Pacers beat the Los Angeles Lakers 105-79 on Wednesday night to snap a six-game losing streak. The Pacers held Kobe Bryant to 26 points, 10 below his average, to snap a string of eight straight games of at least 30.

Iverson hopeful of Saturday return (AP)
Allen Iverson probably won't play in Philadelphia's game against Detroit on Friday night because he has two injured ankles, but the former MVP hopes to return for Saturday's game at Cleveland. "I'm going to make the trip to Cleveland," Iverson said after Thursday's practice. "I don't know if I'll be able to (play), but I'll definitely go on the trip.

Jackson is latest casualty for Pacers (AP)
With Jermaine O'Neal out at least another month and Stephen Jackson the latest on an already lengthy list of casualties, the Indiana Pacers have barely enough healthy players for a scrimmage. Jackson and rookie Sarunas Jasikevicius are the only Pacers who have played in all 44 games this season. But Jackson's availability for Saturday's game against Detroit was questionable because of a hard fall...

Power rankings
Healthy again, Ottawa is back on track and reclaims its position atop Matt's rankings.

Sullivan's OT goal helps Preds snap skid (AP)
The Nashville Predators thrive in tight games, even when they create the problems themselves. Steve Sullivan scored on a breakaway 2:09 into overtime, and Nashville beat the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 Thursday night to snap a three-game skid. The Predators are tied for the league's best record in one-goal games, improving to 20-10 after tying the Avalanche twice in the third period to force overtime.

Senators tie record in 7-2 rout of Pens (AP)
Against the high-scoring Senators, power plays were no advantage for Pittsburgh. Daniel Alfredsson scored twice, including one of the Senators' three short-handed goals, and Ottawa defeated the Penguins 7-2 on Thursday night. "They played well in the first period and got up 2-0 on us," Alfredsson said.

Devils set to retire Stevens' jersey (AP)
Through 22 seasons and more than 1,800 NHL games, Scott Stevens stuck to the same simple recipe for success. "Every year, I always felt that I had to make the team," the former New Jersey Devils defenseman said Thursday, a day before he was to become the first player in franchise history to have his number retired.

Streaking G Thomas gets Bruins past .500 (AP)
The Boston Bruins moved over .500 and ahead of the slumping Canadiens in the standings, all in one night. Glen Murray and Patrice Bergeron scored power-play goals less than two minutes apart and Boston won again behind new starting goalie Tim Thomas, beating Montreal 3-1 on Thursday night. "We've preached all along to our players that we are still in the race," Bruins coach Mike Sullivan said.

Stempniak again lifts Blues in shootout (AP)
Rookie Lee Stempniak is taking advantage of the St. Louis Blues' salary purge. The 22-year-old right wing had his second big game since the trades earlier this week of Doug Weight and Mike Sillinger, scoring two goals and getting the game-winner in the shootout of a 6-5 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night.

Rangers get win from Weekes, beat Isles (AP)
Kevin Weekes got a lot of help from his teammates in a rare start in goal for the New York Rangers. The 30-year-old backup made 23 saves for his first victory in nearly eight weeks and the rest of the Rangers got in front of a lot of other shots in a 5-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday night.

Chimera lifts Blue Jackets in shootout (AP)
Jason Chimera celebrated his return home by beating his former team. The Edmonton native and former Oilers forward scored in the eighth round of a shootout to give the Columbus Blue Jackets a 2-1 win over the Oilers on Thursday night. "It's great coming back here," said Chimera, after faking a forehand shot and flipping a backhand over Jussi Markkanen to net the game-winner.

Reinprecht pays dividends for Coyotes (AP)
Steve Reinprecht made quite a first impression on his new coach. Less than 24 hours after being traded to Phoenix, Reinprecht scored the only goal in the shootout to give the Coyotes a 2-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night. "He played very well," Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky said of his new acquisition.

Sabres win fourth straight, top Flyers (AP)
With the crowd chanting USA! USA!, Ryan Miller got a little emotional. Miller, left off the United States Olympic, made 21 saves to lead the Buffalo Sabres to a 4-2 victory Thursday night over Philadelphia and goalie Robert Esche, who will be playing for team USA at the Turin Games. Miller's omission from the U.S.

Bruton's gamble
LAS VEGAS &ndash; LVMS owner Bruton Smith is about to make a $300 million wager ... and the potential payoff is huge.

Reigning champion back in Cup car (AP)
Though his ribs are still sore from a sprint car crash last month, reigning NASCAR Nextel Cup champion Tony Stewart would still rather be in a race car than sitting and fretting over his aching right side.

Racing publicist ``Chip'' Williams arrested on child sex charges (AP)
A well-known NASCAR publicist was arrested Tuesday and charged with statutory rape and soliciting a minor for sex over the Internet, authorities said.

Las Vegas Motor Speedway to get multimillion-dollar makeover (AP)
LAS VEGAS &ndash; The Las Vegas Motor Speedway will get a multimillion-dollar makeover to increase the...

Hall of Fame Racing could be aptly named (AP)
By the time the Hall of Fame Racing team co-owned by Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman makes its NASCAR debut next month, the team name could aptly apply to both former quarterbacks who won Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys. Staubach was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1985, his first year of eligibility.

Ganassi Racing cruises to victory in Rolex 24 at Daytona (SportsTicker)
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida (Ticker) - The all-star driver lineup of IRL champions Scott Dixon and Dan Wheldon and NASCAR star Casey Mears captured the 44th Rolex 24 at Daytona for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Busch asks for delay in reckless driving hearing (AP)
TOLLESON, Ariz. &ndash; NASCAR driver Kurt Busch had his pre-trial hearing on reckless driving charges postponed.

Judge refuses to dismiss lawsuit against NASCAR (AP)
A federal judge ordered Friday that Kentucky Speedway can move ahead with its $400 million antitrust lawsuit against NASCAR.

Kenseth re-signs with Roush Racing (SportsTicker)
CONCORD, North Carolina (Ticker) - Former NASCAR champion Matt Kenseth has been with Roush Racing for seven years. He will remain there for at least a few more.

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